Gender and Migration-Driven Changes in Rural Eastern Romania. Migrants’ Perspectives

  • 1 University of Bucharest


The article addresses the largely debated linkages between gender and migration, on the one hand, and the impact of migration on migrants’ society of origin, on the other hand. Based on multi-sited research conducted in a village from Eastern Romania and in Rome (the main destination of the population studied), this paper highlights gender differences in the participation to migration process and in the contribution of migrants to the socio-economic development of their society. Using a qualitative methodology based on semi-structured interviews with migrants and participant observations, the research reveals different meanings that migrants (women and men) invest in their actions (i.e. transfers of ideas, money or durable goods and set-up of small local businesses). This study contributes to the understanding of the gendered contribution of migrants to the economic and socio-cultural transformations of their society of origin.

If the inline PDF is not rendering correctly, you can download the PDF file here.

  • Anghel, R. G. (2010) ‚International migrations: A panacea for local development or an impediment? A study of recent social changes in a Romanian town with strong emigration’. Revue d’études comparatives Est-Ouest, 41(4):73-96.

  • Bartram, D. (2010) ‚The normative foundations of ‚policy implications’: reflections on international labour migration’. Work, employment and society, 24(2): 355-365.

  • Bélanger, D., and T.G. Linh, (2011) ‚The impact of transnational migration on gender and marriage in sending communities of Vietnam’, Current sociology, 59(1): 59-77.

  • Black, R., R. King and T. Tiemoko (2003) ‚Migration, return and small enterprise development in Ghana: a route out of poverty? communication paper at the International Workshop on Migration and Poverty’ in West Africa, March 13-14, 2003, University of Sussex, consulted 15.04.2011 at

  • Caritas/Migrantes (2008) Romania, Immigrazioni e Lavoro in Italia. Statistiche, Problemi e Prospettive, Idos.

  • Caritas-Migrantes (2010) Immigrazione. Dossier statistico, Roma, available online at (consulted 14.04.2011)

  • Chytkova, Z. (2011) ‚Consumer acculturation, gender, and food: Romanian women in Italy between tradition and modernity’. Consumption Markets and Culture, 14(3): 267-291.

  • Cingolani, P., F. Piperno (2006) ’Migrazioni, legami transnazionali e sviluppo nei contesti locali. Il caso di Marginea e di Focșani’. Societatea reală, 4: 54-78.

  • Dannecker, P. (2009) ’Migrant visions of development: a gendered approach’. Population, space and place, 15(2): 119-132.

  • Dăianu, D., L. Voinea, M. Tolici (2001) Balance of payments financing in Romania: The role of remittances, Romanian Centre for economic policies, Bucharest, 2001, available online at (consulted 18.04.2011).

  • De Haas, H. (2009) ’International migration and regional development in Morocco: a review’. Journal of ethnic and migration studies, 35(10): 1571-1593.

  • De Haas, H. (2010) Migration and development: A theoretical perspective. International Migration Review, 44(1): 227-264.

  • De Sousa, J., L. Duval (2010) Geographic distance and remittances in Romania: out sight, out of mind?. Economie internationale, 1(121): 81-97.

  • Gallo, E. (2006) Italy is not a good place for men: narratives of places, marriage and masculinity among Malayali migrants. Global Networks, 6(4): 357-372.

  • ISTAT (2007)

  • King, R., M. Dalipaj and N. Mai (2006) ‚Gendering migration and remittances: Evidence from London and Northern Albania’. Population, space and place, 12(6): 409-434.

  • Levitt, P. (1998) ‚Social remittances: Migration driven local-level forms of cultural diffusion’, International Migration Review, 32(4): 926-948

  • Lutz, H. (2010) Gender in the migratory process, Journal of ethnic and migration studies, 36(10): 1647 - 1663.

  • Mahler, S. and Pessar, P. (2006) Gender matters: Ethnographers bring gender from the peripherz toward the core of migration studies. International Migration Review, 37(3): 666-699.

  • Marcus, E. G. (1995) Ethnography of the world system: The emergence of the multi-sited ethnography. Annual review of anthropology, 24: 95-117.

  • Pauli, G. (2008) A house of one’s own: Gender, migration and residence in rural Mexico. American Ethnologist. 35(1): 171-187.

  • Portes, A. (2010) Migration and social change: Some conceptual reflections. Journal of ethnic and migration studies, 36(10): 1537 – 1563.

  • Raghuram, P. (2009) Which migration, what development? Unsettling the edifice of migration and development. Population, space and place, 15 (2): 103-117.

  • Rahman, M. M. (2009) Temporary migration and changing family dynamics: implications for social development. Population, space and place, 51 (2): 161-174.

  • Rossi, E., F. Botti (2010) Migration as a Factor of Social Innovation and Development: the Case of Romanian Migration to Italy. Revista Inovația Socială, (2)2010: 15-23.

  • Sana, M., D. Massey (2005) Household composition, family migration, and community context: Migrant remittances in four countries’ Social science quarterly, 86(2): 509-528.

  • Sandu, D. (2000) Migrația circulatorie ca strategie de viață. Sociologie Românească, 2: 5-29.

  • Sandu, D. (2007) Community selectivity of temporary emigration from Romania. Journal of population studies, no 1-2: 11-45.

  • Sandu, D. (2010) Lumile sociale ale migrației românești în străinătate. Iași: Polirom.

  • Semyonov, M. and Gorodzeisky, A. (2005) Labor migration, remittances and household income: A comparison between Filipino and Filipina overseas workers. International Migration Review. 39(1): 45-68.

  • Scott, J. W. (1986) Gender: a useful category of historical analysis. The American Historical Review, 91(5):1053-1075.

  • SOPEMI (2010) Perspectives des migrations internationales, OECD.

  • Sørensen, N. N. (2005) Migrant remittances, development and gender. Dansk Institut for Internationale Studier, Copenhagen. available online at (consulted 27.07.2011).

  • Suksomboon, P. (2008) Remittances and ‚social remittances’, their impact on livelihoods of Thai women in the Netherlands and non-migrant in Thailand. Gender, Technology and Development, 12(3): 461-482.

  • Tacoli C. (1999) International Migration and the Restructuring of Gender Asymmetries: Continuity and Change among Filipino Labor Migrants in Rome. International Migration Review, 33(3):658-682.

  • United Nations (2009) Trends in international migrant stocks: The 2008 revision, United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division (2009), available online at: (consulted 14.04.2011).

  • Vlase, I (2006) Rețele de migratie între Vulturu și Roma. Elemente pentru o analiză de gen. Societatea Reală, 4: 125-150.

  • Zlotnik, H. (2003) The global dimensions of female migration. Migration Information Source, available at (consulted 27/07/2011)


Journal + Issues